Golden State Warriors: Comparisons To Other Contenders

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San Antonio Spurs

Jun 15, 2014; San Antonio, TX, USA; San Antonio Spurs forward Kawhi Leonard (2), guard Tony Parker (9), forward Tim Duncan (21) and guard Manu Ginobili (20) celebrate with the Larry O

Projected Starting Lineup

PG: Tony Parker

SG: Danny Green

SF: Kawhi Leonard

PF: Tim Duncan

C: Tiago Splitter

Key Bench Players

Manu Ginobili, Patty Mills, Boris Diaw, and Marco Belinelli.

Head Coach

Gregg Popovich, 19th year in San Antonio.


Guess what? The same team that punished the Heat in five games in The Finals will be back for another season. The same starting five along with the same impressive bench will try for back-to-back championships. After the display they put on, who’s doubting them?

San Antonio’s success starts with the management. They went out and signed Marco Belinelli and Boris Diaw and traded George Hill for the future Finals MVP Kawhi Leonard. A large part of the success is also because of Gregg Popovich, who is widely accepted as today’s best coach and even perhaps the best coach in NBA history.

They’ve drafted multiple stars late in the first round and into the second round of many NBA Drafts. They are the epitome of a complete franchise.

On paper, the Warriors are the better team. Golden State has more talent in Curry and Thompson, but it’d be foolish to judge the Spurs solely on paper. One needs to see them play–see them work as one cohesive unit–before a final opinion can be made.

Whatever “The Spurs’ Way” is, it seems to work. No one expected Diaw, a washed up veteran when he signed with San Antonio, to be a huge part of the Spurs’ success. No one expected a mid-first round draft pick out of SDSU to lead the way in the Finals over LeBron James’ Heat.

There’s simply no disputing the Spurs’ greatness. Kerr, the new Golden State head coach, played under Popovich. He experienced “The Spurs’ Way.” He’s seen Popovich deal with stars and benchwarmers all the same. Perhaps Kerr–a disciple of Phil Jackson as well–can start a culture similar to San Antonio’s in Golden State.

Even if such a culture is brewing in the Bay Area, it will still be a few years before they overpass the great San Antonio Spurs.